EU fishing plot: MEP lifts lid on ‘humiliating’ plan to track vessels ‘like suspects’

Boris Johnson ‘sacrificed fishing industry’ says June Mummery

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National Rally (RN) MEP France Jamet raged against the Commission’s proposal which would see EU fishermen forced to have CCTV cameras on their boats. Ms Jamet said it was outrageous Brussels would treat its small fishermen like “suspects” and “delinquents”.

She blasted: “Where we hoped for a gesture to help small artisanal fishermen, already subject to the most restrictive regulations in the world as well as to pressure from pseudo-ecological organisations of the extreme left, the European Commission intends to further complicate their task.

“Madame Aguilera, Socialist rapporteur for the European Parliament on the regulation of fisheries control, is the spokeswoman for the new idea of the technocrats of the Commission: cameras on board of ships, or CCTV.

“Annoying our fishermen with ridiculously complex rules was not enough. It is now a matter of considering them as suspects, like delinquents.

“Yet it is the Japanese tuna boats which, for years, plundered the Mediterranean without us being able to stop them!

“Yet it is the ecologists who put hundreds of wind turbines in the seas perched on gigantic concrete pylons!

“Yet it is Turkey that is transforming the Mediterranean Sea into a gigantic pool of acid through chemical waste from its textile industry!

“Yet it is the EU governments that are importing ever more fish caught or farmed outside the European Union, disrespecting the most basic health and ecological rules of fishing and aquaculture!

“But that doesn’t matter! There is an eternal criminal, an eternal culprit, an eternal polluter: the fisherman! Always him.”

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She continued: “We have always been totally against this humiliating and unacceptable attitude towards our fishermen.”

In a staunch attack on Emmanuel Macron’s government, the French MEP said the industry had also been affected by the President’s mistakes in handling the coronavirus crisis.

She added: “The consideration and respect we have for them, the essential utility of their profession in the food sovereignty of France, lead us to refuse to be chained to cameras passing them off as looters.

“They are independent, responsible and committed to freedom.

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“Let’s respect them. Let’s support them.”

It is not the first time the RN MEP has lashed out at Brussels over its fishing rules.

Speaking in the European Parliament last month, she unleashed a tirade against the bloc, saying the EU must “urgently” change the terms of the grossly unpopular CFP.

She said: “Fishermen are rightly proud of their noble and ancestral trade, essential to the life of coastlines, but many of them also hope for another future for their children.

“We can understand them: it is a physical job, difficult, but above all, with prospects for development blocked for years by the Common Fisheries Policy.”

She also accused the EU of bowing to demands from eco-Non-Governmental Organisations to impose strict fishing quotas and conditions.

Ms Jamet said it would be in the bloc’s interest to listen to the concerns of fishermen instead.

She added: “Even though our fishermen respect the strictest environmental standards in the world and they constantly have to adapt to new and increasingly demanding regulations.

“Some of them are all the more unfair because the EU keeps signing free trade treaties which massively import fish whose conditions of breeding and catch do not correspond at all to our health and environmental standards.

“Some of them are all the more unjust because they attack small-scale fishing especially and small farms letting industrial fishing plunder our resources with impunity.”

Additional reporting by Maria Ortega

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